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Argentina’s Rio de Plata estuary gets the lion’s share of geopolitical attention, and for good reason—it’s no accident that the capital of Buenos Aires is situated on what is arguably the premier river network of the southern hemisphere.

But Argentina is replete with excellent geography and few internal barriers, allowing for a proliferation of localities with capital generation capabilities independent of Buenos Aires. Mendoza is no different. Nestled among the foothills of the Andes, Mendoza is a premier agricultural zone best known for being the largest wine-producing region in Latin America, famed for its Malbecs.

The central role of agriculture has often put Mendoza at odds with national politics in Buenos Aires; the Radical Civic Union, the local political party, was founded after frustration with both far-right and Peronist policies, exemplifying the challenges Buenos Aires faces in bringing regional local governments in line with national prerogatives.